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Complete Price Guide to Watches Paperback – January, 2005

3.7 out of 5 stars 91 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

I've used this book for years and it is a necessity if you are a watch collector/dealer. Great information about American/European Pocket watches and wrist watches. If you are selling your watch, this is a good source to get an idea of the value. -Gregory M. Kimura --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Cooksey Shugart has been an active horologist since the early 1960s and a member of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors since the early 1970s. He has searched for fine timepieces all over the world and is the foremost expert in the field of antique horology. He has traveled extensively to auctions throughout the U.S. and Europe, to regional and national conventions, meets and shows, and keeps up-to-date pulse of the watch market.

Richard E. Gilbert has been an active horologist since the early 1960s and a member of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors since the early 1970s. He has searched for fine timepieces all over the world and is an expert in the field of antique horology. He has traveled extensively to auctions throughout the U.S. and Europe, to regional and national conventions, meets and shows, and keeps up-to-date pulse of the watch market.

Tom Engle has been an active horologist since the early 1960s and a member of the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors since the early 1970s. He has searched for fine timepieces all over the world and is an expert in the field of antique horology. He has traveled extensively to auctions throughout the U.S. and Europe, to regional and national conventions, meets and shows, and keeps up-to-date pulse of the watch market. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Series: Complete Price Guide to Watches (Book 25)
  • Paperback: 1173 pages
  • Publisher: Collector Books; 25 edition (January 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1574324594
  • ISBN-13: 978-1574324594
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 1.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (91 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,223,992 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By R. Neil Ferguson on January 18, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In my review of last year's edition of this annual price guide, I was only willing to give it two stars. While that may seem brutal for what is clearly a lot of compiled information, keep in mind that most of this data has evolved over a twenty-year collection process, and each new year is now largely a product of editing and tweaking the previous volume. However, I have decided to raise my rating for this year's edition by one star because even a cursory overview reveals that the effort put in since the last volume was not nearly so minimal as the previous 2000 version.
There are not a lot of new additions in the way of specific models or grades, and this still remains a significant weakness of this guide. To the newcomer, it appears to cover a vast array of models and grades, but to the experienced collector, it is by no means near the definitive encyclopedia of watches. Even in its strongest area, American pocket watches, it continues to overlook a considerable number of grades, leaving the reader to make lump assumptions about prices of watches overlooked. The same comments apply to wristwatches, where it might have been better to leave well documented names completely out (such as Rolex or Patek) since they are better represented with great detail in other books. Does this matter? Just look at the number of "rare", "scarce", bogus and absurd claims on some Internet watch ads, and the answer should obvious: such claims would not survive the light of day were this guide truly complete.
But for the many grades that are in the book, both pocket and wrist, it appears the authors have awakened to the reality of the market: a booming economy has been driving prices ever upward, particularly for collectibles.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The mere fact that this guide is now in its 20th year is evidence of its popularity. It is unquestionably the most successful guide of its kind. Much of that success lies in its clear if sometimes oversimplified listings that make it easy for rank beginners to find the majority of popular watches, and the sheer volume of entries. I would rate the pocket watch section over the wrist watch listing for detail (e.g., coverage for high-end watches like Patek, Rolex and others is superficial and buyers should rely on some other book), but both are adequate for the most popular material.
However, evidence is that most of the prices are not updated annually, and publishing deadlines make the few updates old when fresh off the press. Some prices simply remain untouched for years when auction and other sales clearly show significant changes (generally increases). I wonder how many of the scarcer and "by-the-book-mint" watches the authors would be willing to sell from their collections for the prices shown?
Some historical information, such as the production dates and serial numbers are questionable. The section on Aurora watches is clearly at odds with documented factory records despite fresh editing done to that information in the 2000 edition. And where South Bend individual grades are priced in detail, Auroras are lumped into general groups -- a sad oversight, since many of those grades are very scarce (multi-stars). Other rather common grades from popular makers are unexplainably missing amid a hit-and-miss grade list.
The price grading system is dramatically skewed to the unobtainable, making one minute flaw justification to slash the price below half of its near-mint state (which is mint minus a box, yet most watches likely never had factory boxes).
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Comment 74 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
For years I've been recommending this book as the best place for a beginner to start. The original text is 20 years old and was originally written for a pocket watch price guide. The information in the front part of the book is therefore written on pocket watches, however this general information ("how a watch works, the history of watchmaking, etc) is equally applicable to wrist watches. This portion of the text is rich in information that all collectors of vintage timepieces will find useful.
The price guide portion of the book can be divided into two main sections. Pocket watch evaluations are very detailed with manufacturer histories of most of the major American makers. The vast majority of American pocket watches can be found in this price guide.
The wrist watch section is an alphabetical listing of many examples collectible vintage wrist watches. The quality of the images in this section ranges from poor to acceptable. There are many factual errors concerning model names, case materials, etc. Pricing bears little resemblance to current market conditions.
All in all, a must for the vintage watch collector's library - as long as you recognize the limitations.
Don Baker @ finertimes.com
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Format: Paperback
This item is very detailed and contain a lot of watches in it, but it is not so complete. It did not list any recent models, which was what I was originally looking for. However, it is an excellent guide for antique watches.
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Format: Paperback
This giant latest edition (19th) contains over 1,100 pages and covers over 10,000 watches. 7,500 are illustrated. It provides a wealth of information useful to the novice or professional collector or dealer. Not only is it a price guide, but it has a huge amount of information, including grading, how a watch works, how to date a watch, history, coding and much, much more. It has so much data, one wonders how they were able to assemble it all. The volume is really a bargain at its price. Wonderful reference !!
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